June 13, 2018

Kindness Rules

By: Larry Shaffer

Discovery Green Park in Houston!

Ruth 2, part 2

Ruth found the fields owned by Boaz, a kinsman of her deceased father-in-law who died in Moab along with Ruth’s husband. Ruth was a Moabitess, a widow and a foreigner. But she also was kind, humble, unselfish and a smart, industrious hard worker. Her newfound faith in the true God of Israel emboldened her belief and confidence that God would care for her and her mother-in-law, Naomi.

The boss is here!

Toward the end of the day after Ruth had worked hard gleaning in the fields, Boaz, the owner, arrived at his fields. Boaz greeted his workers with kind words of blessings. He notices Ruth in the distance and he asked his servant, “Whose young woman is this?” The servant in charge of the reapers replied, ‘she is the young Moabite woman who returned with Naomi from the land of Moab.’ She had asked the servant, ‘please let me glean and gather after the reapers among the sheaves. Thus, she came and has remained from morning until now.’”

A good reputation goes a long way

Boaz felt compassion for Ruth. He approached her and told her to stay in his fields and glean. He assured her he would let all his servants know that she was welcome to glean his fields and if she needed water, she could drink from the water jars and eat the food available to his servants. Ruth fell on her face with gratitude and said, “Why have I found favor in your sight that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?” Boaz replied to her,

“All that you have done for your mother-in-law after the death of your husband has been fully reported to me, and how you left your father and your mother and the land of your birth and came to a people that you did not previous know. May the Lord reward your work, and your wages be full from the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to seek refuge.”

An exquisite portrait

Wow, this is a mixture of several beautiful colors blended together to paint an exquisite picture portrait of God’s redeeming plan for His faithful servants. First there are the brilliant colors of God’s sovereign care and mercy toward a humble, faithful, foreign widow. God doesn’t care about man’s position and power and earthly achievements. Instead, He fully extends His grace and care toward the humblest of servants. Additionally, the radiant shades of Ruth’s sincere faith in the God of Israel, her kindness and servitude toward her mother-in-law and her diligent work-ethic adds brilliance to this masterpiece. Finally, the bright colors of Boaz’ tender kindness to his workers and servants which is extended to a widowed Moabitess is the final touch to the translucent colors of this painting of God’s redeeming heart. Boaz exhibits the heart of God. His wealth has not turned him inward or arrogant or self-reliant. His faith in God is strong, his character is solid, and his kindness extends to all. Boaz foreshadows the work of the Messiah; to extend grace and redemption to all!

Walk humbly

God is orchestrating His plan in our lives as well. How should you respond to God’s work in you? Your responsibilities are simple. “And what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God,” Micah 6:8. Amen!